Chapter 32 Fatty’s Insurance Measure

It happened so fast that we couldn’t respond and none of us dared to move. “Did you also arrange this?” Zhang Haixing asked Fatty softly.

“Nonsense, where could I find so many of the boss lady’s sons?”

Then this is serious, I said to myself. After a short standoff, two foreigners walked through the door.

It was two of those Germans. I didn’t pay any attention before, but now that I saw them coming in, I found that these two guys were really fucking strong, like bulls. Both were a head taller than me, with silver-gray hair and chiseled faces.

These were the faces of mountaineers.

After the two foreigners came in and waved, all the laser spots disappeared in an instant. But I knew that this didn’t mean that all of the snipers had retreated; they were just telling us that they were watching us. And since the lasers had withdrawn, they didn’t want us to know their movements. There must be quite a few snipers still aiming at us. After all, good snipers used sights and could lock onto two targets at a time.

Since the Germans came in, they had been saying hello to us using Chinese baoquan etiquette (1) and one of them said in very poor Chinese, “Sorry, sorry, everyone sit down, everyone sit down.”

“Tch, this foreigner has seen too many wuxia (2) films,” Fatty muttered from beside me.

“You two can go,” one of the foreigners said as he came up to me and Fatty.

“Eh?” I was a little surprised, but Fatty said, “Can we go now?”

“Yes, hurry up.” The foreigner didn’t even look at us as he said, “What’s happening here has nothing to do with you, it’s between us and them.”

As Fatty and I looked at each other, Zhang Haike said, “Why don’t you go quickly? We can handle it ourselves.”

I found it very strange; I couldn’t seem to figure out the relationship logistics of this whole thing. Fatty grinned at me, which meant that we should take advantage of the bastards and leave first before the foreigner went back on his word.

Like chickens pecking rice, Fatty and I stiffly left the room and moved into the courtyard. I glanced at him and asked, “What should we do? Where should we go?”

“Let’s go to your room first. It’s ok here. I’ve been communicating with this group of Germans,” Fatty said.

I was surprised, “Did you really arrange this?”

Fatty gestured at me to remain silent, “Don’t mention it. It’s not an arrangement, it’s my insurance policy. I think there are too many risks in the game this time, so I pulled the Germans into the water in advance. It’s not convenient to talk here. Let’s go back and talk.”

I nodded while secretly thinking that this was very similar to the awkward situation when you were visiting a friend’s house and he and his wife started arguing. Very embarrassed, you came outside while thinking: shit, there shouldn’t be any husband or wife killing, right? But just when you didn’t know what to do, your friend/colleague suddenly says: don’t worry, his wife actually loves me.

It didn’t seem quite right to describe it like this after listening to Fatty’s short explanation, so he and I walked all the way back to my room. After we went in and closed the door, I asked him what the hell was going on here.

Fatty said it was nothing. Before he met up with me, he pretended to be a store clerk and sold me some cigarettes with bugs in them. Each pack of cigarettes had bugs in its packaging. After that, he followed me all the way here and gained insight into many of my thoughts. When I was captured, he heard the whole process clearly and was even near the lama temple at that time. As soon as he heard that they wanted to test him, he immediately went back to the town and set up his trap.

But when he was watching me before that, he found that although the Zhang family was watching me, others were watching the Zhang family.

This was a huge problem. Fatty was only one person so he was difficult to find, but there were many people who were monitoring the Zhang family, and they were all foreigners, so it was easy to find them if you paid a little attention.

Fatty felt that if the Zhang family carried out these surveillance activities themselves, they would surely find that they were being watched, but they were too confident and used the local people. The local people didn’t have this kind of experience, so they had no idea that other people were watching them when they were following others.

“Who are these foreigners?” I asked Fatty.

“Qiu Dekao’s overseas investors,” he said.

I shook my head. I didn’t understand such things, so Fatty started explaining, “Qiu Dekao’s company was a joint-stock company, so after he died, it was in chaos. I’m sure you know what kind of things they were up to a few years ago. At that time, their company’s board of directors made two decisions: strip out their advantageous businesses and form a new company while leaving many of Qiu Dekao’s projects and materials in the parent company. It was a huge mess because those were projects with big losses. They put the company on the capital market, hoping that someone would buy it at a low price. If that failed, they would go bankrupt.”

“As a result—like a miracle—someone actually bought this mess. They not only took over the huge debt but also preserved many projects, one of which was Qiu Dekao’s most respected project in China. The buyer was a German company, whose Chinese name is ‘Anjin’.”(3)

Anjin? I wondered. Does that have something to do with Anli?(4)

“How did you hook up with them?” I asked him.

“I’m ashamed to say that I didn’t initiate it. They were the ones who came to me,” Fatty said. “They found me soon after you went up the mountain. Shit, under a hundred thousand marks and several machine guns, I figured I might as well cooperate with them. Their aim was to know the true purpose of this group of Hong Kong people, and they hoped I would cooperate with them so I brought them as backup. Assuming that something went wrong with the trap I set up, we at least had a retreat and an ally.”

“So this group of Germans doesn’t know how important I am and let me go.”

“Maybe, but not necessarily. For that group of Germans, maybe you weren’t important at all. For example, the task of those Hong Kong people was to take something from the snowy mountain, in which case you play a very important role. But for the Germans, their aim must be to find the place in the snowy mountain, so you’re completely irrelevant. And that group of Hong Kong people knows the route to the lake in the snowy mountain, so they can communicate directly with each other.”

I pondered over it for a moment and felt that it made some sense, but if the two sides couldn’t talk it over, wouldn’t there be a fight in this temple?

“When the sandpiper and clam wage war against each other, the fisherman catches both,” Fatty said. “Under all this shit, I think that whatever the result is, it will be good for us. Even though we’re so stupid in this situation, it’s rare that the other two sides are as well. We might as well let them be stupid and thoroughly enjoy the show while we’re at it. But in case they stop being stupid, let’s continue playing stupid.”

I thought of Zhang Haixing and suddenly felt that something was off. People like Zhang Haike and Zhang Longban acted very slyly and never gave up until they reached their goals. They kept acting polite in front of me only because I was very important, but Zhang Haixing was a girl with a real temperament. Truthfully, I didn’t want such people to die here in vain. Maybe it was because of my feelings for the Zhang family itself and my dislike for Qiu Dekao, but I had long stood by the Zhangs.

I didn’t think I could let the situation change like this. I still had to help if I could.

I lit a cigarette and said to Fatty, “Your thoughts are too negative. We have to be positive when engaged in revolution—”

The words were halfway out of my mouth when a muffled sound was heard and a light shot through the window like a shooting star. Blood sprayed from Fatty’s temple and he took three or four steps back after the bullet hit before falling to the ground.

<Chapter 31><Table of Contents><Chapter 33>


TN Notes:

(1) To cup one fist in the other hand (as a sign of respect). It’s in a lot of martial arts movies/shows. If you’ve seen The Untamed (my second obsession after Supernatural lol), they do it A LOT

(2) Chinese literary and cinematic genre focusing on adventures of martial artists in ancient China

(3) I thought the pinyin would be more appropriate in this context. Characters are 安静 which can mean “quiet/peaceful/calm”

(4) Guessing he’s making a pun that gets lost in translation? Characters are 安利 which my dictionary said translates to the American brand Amway that sells health, beauty, and home care products.


Updated 12/18/2021

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